Are Russian Marines Preparing to Seize Odessa from Ukraine?

Are Russian Marines Preparing to Seize Odessa from Ukraine?

The “Odessa option” would offer strategic opportunities for Russia.


Finally, even a few successful Ukrainian takedowns of landing or air-assault platforms with naval infantry or VDV units onboard could bleed the Russian war machine. In the age of smart phones and digitalized political warfare, such incidents would go well beyond their kinetic effects and reflect poorly on President Vladimir Putin’s leadership in the eyes of the Russian people. Ukraine’s real-time intelligence and command and control capabilities, as well as coastal defenses and air defense weaponry, will determine the outcome in a battle for Odessa. If it happens, the amphibious bonanza will be won or lost in its overture.

Dr. Can Kasapoglu is director of the defense research program at EDAM and a fellow on ‘Eurasian Military Affairs’ at the Jamestown Foundation. Dr. Kasapoglu holds a Ph.D. from the Turkish War College and an M.Sci. degree from the Turkish Military Academy. Previously he was an Eisenhower Fellow at the NATO Defense College in Rome and held a visiting research post at the NATO Cyber Center of Excellence in Tallinn. His works can be followed @EdamDefense.


Sine Ozkarasahin is an analyst at EDAM’s defense research program. She holds a BA from Leiden University in International Studies, and a postgraduate degree in International Development and Middle Eastern Studies from SciencesPo, Paris. Her work at EDAM focuses on open-source intelligence and emerging defense technologies.

Image: Reuters.